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On the lighter side: How to agitate around Taiwan (Jan. 17-23)

On the lighter side: How to agitate around Taiwan (Jan. 17-23)

Last week brought a guide to identifying people from all around Taiwan at-a-glance based on their specific traits. Now here's a guide on the one sentence they hate hearing the most from out-of-towners. *Northern Taiwan* Taipei, where people clamor to keep up with new fads, even when they aren't inherently worth it: "So, do you guys just line up for anything that's edible?" Taoyuan District, Taoyuan City (formerly Taoyuan City, Taoyuan County): "Where are you from?" "Taoyuan." "Where in Taoyuan?" "Taoyuan." Hsinchu, the island's high-tech capital: "Isn't Hsinchu known for its abundance of nerdy guys (??)?" Miaoli, home to numerous protests and one of Taiwan's most controversial politicians: "So how come you guys voted for Magistrate Liu Cheng-hung (???) twice?" *Central Taiwan* Nantou, the location of Taiwan's most celebrated lake: "So do you live right next to Sun Moon Lake?" (It's a scenic area, not a market!) Taichung, the third largest city by area and home to no shortage of markets: "I bet you go to Fengjia Night Market every day, right?" Changhua: "That's southern Taiwan, right?" (Firmly in the middle of the west coast, actually.) Yunlin, squeezed awkwardly between central and southern Taiwan: "So is your county, like, in the south?" (At least they've heard of the place!) *Southern Taiwan* Chiayi, endlessly proud of its turkey rice vendors except for exactly one restaurant in particular: "So I heard 'Spraying Water Chicken Rice' (?????) is the best restaurant in Chiayi..." Tainan, endlessly proud of all of its eats and treats: "I just don't see what the hype is about." (That's not even a question!) Kaohsiung, the only city with a subway system outside of Taipei: "How come I can't use (Taipei's) EasyCards on the Kaohsiung MRT?" Pingtung, where most of the population is centered in the north of the county: "You go to Kenting (by the 40-50 km narrow coastal highway connecting the isolated beach town to metropolitan Pingtung) all the time, right?" *Eastern Taiwan* Taitung, isolated from Taiwan's urbanized west coast by the Central Mountain Range: "Why don't you just take the high-speed rail (which only runs down the west coast) to get home faster?" Hualien, also remote but not *that* remote: "Have you ever had McDonald's?" (There are in fact four McDonald's restaurants in the county of 334,000 people.) Yilan, which often sees serious weekend traffic from the capital: "It must be nice to live in Taipei's backyard garden, huh?" *Offshore Counties* Penghu, located less than 30 km west of Taiwan proper: "Do you need to bring your passport on the plane ride over?" Kinmen, over 200 km west of Taiwan but just a few km from China: "How come the quality of your cable TV (which comes all the way from Taiwan proper) is so bad?" And lastly, the Matsu islands, also off the coast of China and home to just 13,000 people: "Wait, so there actually is a place called Matsu?" (By Wesley Holzer)


Updated : 2021-09-22 09:25 GMT+08:00